The Fayette Tribune, Oak Hill, W.Va.

August 19, 2013

Master Gardener certification classes begin on Aug. 20th

— West Virginia University Extension Service and the New River Master Gardener Association recently  announced the 2013 certification class schedule.  The expansion of the Master Gardener program is providing exciting opportunities for gardeners to experience a wider range of horticultural activities, one of the program organizers said in a press release.

“This year we are bringing in experts from all over the state to provide the best education available. Master Gardeners are the people bringing beauty and the latest growing techniques to the community,” it was stated in the release.

In exchange for 30 hours of indoor and outdoor instruction candidates must donate 30 hours of volunteer service to their communities. Master Gardener projects include the herb garden at Tamarack and the beautification of Fayette County Park at Beckwith. Volunteer activities by Master Gardeners include teaching youth about basic gardening, developing educational workshops, aiding civic groups in planning public gardens, or conducting tours of champion trees.

The cost of becoming a Certified Master Gardener is less than $100. Orientation for the certification classes will be held on Aug. 20 at 1 p.m. in the Conference Room at Carter Hall in Downtown Beckley on Kanawha Street.

Classes will be held Tuesday afternoons starting on Aug. 27 and ending on Nov. 5. Class certificates will be awarded at a banquet on Nov. 21.

The class will include field trips so students get a real hands-on experience in the latest gardening techniques. The class will visit working high tunnels, a farmer’s market, an herb garden, and tour the champion trees. Carpools will get students to all class locations.

For more information, please contact the West Virginia University Extension office in your county, visit the  website at, or call Bette O’Steen, president of the New River Master Gardener Association, at 304-846-2754 or email